Dynamics of Virtual Work

Shenja van der Graaf

Research Studies on Media, Information and Telecommunicaton (SMIT)

COST Action, 2012-

This Action focuses on virtual work, defined as labour, whether paid or unpaid, that is carried out using a combination of digital and telecommunications technologies and/or produces content for digital media. It aims to develop a clear conceptual framework within which such work can be studied, taking account of the ways in which such work can be displaced in both time and space yet still involves human effort, and taking account of the real economic and social contexts and power relations within which such work takes place. In particular, it aims to explore the shifting boundaries between paid and unpaid work and between ‘work’ and ‘play’ and to develop an understanding of how new forms of virtual work emerge and how new value is created in the process. It will further explore the implications of these processes for the development of new economic activities and the transformation of existing ones and the new geographies that are emerging globally as a consequence of these developments. Finally it will look at the implications of these developments for innovation policy, skills policy, information society policy, media policy and employment policy in Europe.